The Sinking of the Lusitania Throughout the history of the world, many ships have sunk. Many sunk in battle and many sunk on accident. But, in the case of the Lusitania, an enemy of the cruise liner’s owner deliberately torpedoed ship full of civilians. During the events of WWI, the Germans sunk the Lusitania, a British cruise ship sailing from the United States to England that contained many American passengers. Many people, especially Americans, believe that Germany killed the passengers on the Lusitania for no apparent reason.
Germany established a submarine war zone around the British Isles and said they would sink any enemy war ships that entered that proximity. Innocent American trading and merchant ships were being shot down and sunk by ruthless German warfare at sea. Germany refused to let the neutral America trade goods with their enemy countries. This dramatically impacted America because much of the American economy was controlled by trade with Britain and France, and moving forward America knew it would be impossible to keep an expanding economy without GB and France. America, despite its efforts, could not remain neutral and was forced to enter World War 1.
*Opportunity was there for example if USA had backed Venezuela over border dispute in interests of that Latin American country rather than the British independent of any Anglo-American rivalries (b/t England & the USA) that existed at the time In 1904, the Russo-Japanese War started b/c – Russia sought ice-free ports in Chinese Manchuria. TR became involved when the Japanese, who were seriously winning – they sank the entire Russian Baltic fleet which steamed all the way from the Baltic around Africa to off the coast of Japan to be completely destroyed by the Japanese Imperial Navy – way more modern than Russian navy at the time. Japan asked for help b/c they were running out of “Men and Yen” (soldiers & $). Pres TR organized a conference at Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 1905 to mediate an end to the war. He also helped arrange an international conference in Algrecias, Spain in 1906 over North African conflicts.
Before America entered World War I in April, 1917, they acted as suppliers for Europe. At the time America wanted to remain neutral until Germany became responsible for destroying several United States ships. President Woodrow Wilson warned Germany of retaliation if they continued to sink their vessels. In February, 1915 German announced unrestricted warfare against all ships, neutral or otherwise, that entered the war zones around Britain. Germany continued to violate the United States demands and continued to sink vessels and kill the innocent Americans onboard.
5.6 With the Japanese failing to respond to the Potsdam Declaration, one could make a strong argument for why the atomic bomb should’ve been dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. With earlier battles ending with large amounts of bloodshed, especially Okinawa and Iwo Jima, it was estimated that the United States would have had approximately one million casualties and the British around half a million if they would’ve continued their island hopping campaign. The Japanese were showing no signs of surrender, willing to not only fight to the death but commit suicide rather than to accept defeat. This allowed the US to imply that the war would drag on longer than it already had, making a solid case to drop the bombs with the two main motives being the salvation of American lives and the speeding up of the war.
As a result, Germany retaliated with submarine warfare, and even warned that it was inevitable that neutral ships would be mistakenly targeted. So in response, Wilson ordered that merchant ships were to be loaded with U.S. Navy crews so that they could fire at German U-boats when passing through the war zone. The outcome proved to be dire, as 4 ships had been destroyed by the time Wilson went to Congress to ask for the declaration of war. John Bassett Moore, a professor of International Law at Columbia University, who later served at the International Court of Justice, argued that, “what most decisively contributed to the involvement of the United States in the war was the assertion of a right to protect belligerent ships on which Americans saw fit to travel and the treatment of armed belligerent merchantmen as peaceful vessels. Both assumptions were contrary to reason, and no other neutral advanced them”
Americans were warned by Germany though just chose to ignore their warning. Spirts of the Americans grew angry that their people were dying especially since the country was declared neutral. Lusitania, a British ship, was an example of Americans dying that brought up aggression towards the Central Power. Even though, the Germans clearly put a notice on the ticket warning Americans of the dangers of traveling on an enemy’s ship during times of war, spirts
They were printing stories just to boost their sells of papers. These prompt the president to send a warship to the Havana harbor, which was eventually blown up killing 260 navy servicemen. Which the yellow press automatically blamed the Spanish authorities. “Even though Spain had no rational motive for provoking the United States, and no evidence of Spanish guilt has ever come to light, the incident was instantly seized upon to inflame passions for war,” stated Ries and Weber. The United States insisted on making Spain pay for the demise of the
Within months another British liner, the Arabic, was sunk by a U-boat torpedo. Wilson again demanded the Germans to scale down the submarine attacks, and again the German government gave only a half-hearted acknowledgment. Then, in early 1916, Germany announced that it would begin attacking all merchant ships without warning in the waters around Europe, including neutral merchants. Wilson notified Berlin that this policy was illegal according to the international rules of war and were therefore unacceptable. Germany responded only with the destruction of the steamer Sussex in March.
tried to remain neutral, their efforts were conceded for the war did not only affect the countries involved in the bloody battles. At the time, Germany was heavy in its usage of submarine warfare, which targeted all merchant ships even from neutral countries. The sinking of the Lusitania, a British passenger liner, on May 7th, 1915 enraged Americans as 128 U.S. citizens were killed. American trade rights were also violated when Germany decided to reverse the Sussex pledge. Primarily trading with Britain and France, commercial shipping became difficult if not almost impossible, but likewise setting off a more anti-German feeling whilst improving relations with the Allies.